Technical Writing

How to move from a reactive to proactive approach in technical writing?

Orit Itsik

Table of Content

Documentation work can sometimes lean more towards responsiveness rather than initiation

The hard working Product team would introduce new products, add features, or release versions, and the technical writing team would follow with updated documentation. Every once in a while someone from Sales, Support, or a co-founder would give us feedback, we would quickly respond, and move on to our next product, feature, release note, etc. 

This process helps us produce relevant content to help our users self-serve, and it helps us impress everyone with our quick response time. But it’s easy to forget to take a step back to look at the big picture. 

We should all be more proactive

When it comes to our documentation – setting the tone and looking at the big picture should be our modus operandi. One powerful tool we found to help gain control of our own work is Zoomin Analytics. Let’s look at some of the insights that helped us improve our Zoomin Documentation Portal – for the benefit of our users as well as our own. 

Zoomin Analytics provides insights about central KPIs like those related to traffic, but let’s discuss some of the ones you may not be so familiar with. For example, one entire dashboard in Zoomin Analytics is entirely dedicated to related links. This list of references, which can be automatically created by your authoring tool, is often neglected, to the point that it includes items that are not really relevant to the topic at hand. When we checked this dashboard, we found that most of our users were not looking beyond the first and second link on the list. We decided to make these lists shorter so that everyone’s lives would be a little bit easier. It was a simple fix that made us feel great. 

Zoomin Analytics also provided us with data to actively explore and improve the effectiveness of our documentation. As we checked our Search and GPT Search dashboards (btw, Zoomin GPT search is the coolest, in case you didn’t know), we found some queries that didn’t get a response. This turned out to be an opportunity to improve our content to help us give our users relevant answers to their questions. We now check this dashboard regularly to focus on relevant search terms and queries and work them into our docs – one more relatively easy fix that improves our search KPIs and makes us feel more engaged with our own content. 

More than minor tweaks to our documentation, we also used our search insights to prioritize our work. “Analytics” and “API” seemed to be popular search terms according to our dashboards. We made sure to prioritize these areas, to help our users find what they’re looking for. 

But hang on. We didn’t discuss yet the holy grail of Zoomin Analytics – enter drumroll – the Case Deflection dashboard! This dashboard allows us to assign dollars and cents to each support case that our users were just about to submit before they saw that beautiful document that got them to close the support portal and live happily ever after with our product. Wouldn’t you want to flash out your numbers? We know we do. 

We encourage you too to look at the big picture using your own Zoomin Analytics dashboards. Prepare to be amazed. Oh, and you can also get certified as a Zoomin Analytics Admin – just start  here.

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